Sunday, December 16, 2018

Adam Junction Tunnel/Underpass, Yay! צומת אדם

Way back when, in the early days, first couple of decades of living in Shiloh and the development of Mateh Binyamin, the Benjamin Regional Council, all of the yishuvim, communities off of what is now Kvish, Highway 60 and those on the parallel section of the Alon Road, considered ourselves as suburbs of Jerusalem. The first fifteen years or so we lived in Shiloh, there wasn't a Kvish, Highway 60. We traveled via the eastern neighborhoods of Jerusalem and Ramalla, passing Beit El's western side, then the Jalazoun refugee camp and Waadi Charamiya to get to Shiloh. Then there was no Adam Junction connecting Adam, Jerusalem, Ramalla and the Shomron-Binyamin.

Even though we had to drive through Ramalla and those Arab neighborhoods, the trip, even by bus, was about an hour from Shiloh. With time and even after the bypass roads, Jerusalem seemed to get much further away. The past few years has become a nightmare for those who need to travel to and from Jerusalem. Traffic jams began as early as 6am.

For the past few years, I've been telling people that Shiloh has moved to the Petach Tikvah area, since it's so much easier to get to Rosh Ha'ayin, the Yarkon Junction, Petach Tikva and Hod Hasharon. Many of my neighbors, who have cars, take care of all sorts of official things in the nearby city of Ariel. Lots of people tell me that they can't remember the last time they've gone to Jerusalem. I sleep in Jerusalem the night before my Matan classes. This way I can see friends and family, plus get to class easily in the morning.

There's a whatsapp group I'm in for reporting traffic jams; as of right now it has 257 members. Until close to a week ago, there were constant updates about traffic jams. In recent days it has quieted down, except for the traffic stopping as a result of terror attacks and car accidents, which is another topic completely. Why has traffic speeded up? Why has Jerusalem moved closer?

There's now a tunnel/underpass at the Adam Junction. Vehicles needing neither Adam nor Ramalla now drive directly, unhindered. Rush hour is now fast rather than slow, B"H, thank Gd. Take a look!